Monolith has released a second piece of story DLC for Middle-earth: Shadow of War. This latest expansion, called Desolation of Mordor, places players in the shoes of not Talion but Baranor, the Captain of Minis Ithil, who played a supporting role for Talion in the base game. In the DLC, rather than commanding a legion of orcs by navigating their brutal orcish politics, players will have the chance to control other humans in a quest to contain a new orc threat. Desolation of Mordor takes players to the desert region of Lithlad to recruit human mercenaries.
Since Baranor is human, and has neither wraith nor ring of power, players won’t have access to the easy revives or powers that they’re used to. The resulting gameplay is “a new rogue-like campaign mode,” and comes with many new outpost missions and foes to tangle with. Also appearing in the DLC, players can reunite with the dwarven hunter Torvin “to craft powerful new combat gear, including the shield, gauntlet, grapple and kite.” New enemies will include “the mythical Were-wyrms,” and outside of Baranor’s storyline in the DLC, players will be able to return to the area as Talion and expand the scope of their main campaign as well. With Talion, Monolith has confirmed that players can travel to Lithlad “to experience all new Shadows of the Past missions as well as Conquests, Sieges, and Vendettas.”
The Desolation of Mordor DLC is also bringing some general game enhancements with it, in an update that includes changes to the Nemesis system, difficulty levels, and online conquests. The free content update allows Overlords to “now have Bodyguards, which function the same as Warchief Bodyguards, including the ability to deploy spies.” A new difficulty setting has been added: Brutal Difficulty, which is “meant to be difficult but unique in its feel. Enemies are as fast and lethal as on Gravewalker difficulty, but your damage is increased greatly, and your Might and Wrath meters fill faster to allow you to use more special moves.”
Additionally, if you play the DLC and decide you like playing as Baranor and wish you could keep it that way, there’s a new skin for players to collect. The new content comes with a Baranor character skin for use in the main campaign.
Middle-earth: Shadow of War and its accompanying Desolation of Mordor DLC are available for the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.